Naturally: Some of the year’s best salon treatments

Treats for the party season, holiday gifts and winter indulgences for your skin

Ebano in Ballinteer recently started offering a 75-minute hot oil candle massage for €80.

Ebano in Ballinteer recently started offering a 75-minute hot oil candle massage for €80.

 

Over the last 10 months or so, I’ve popped into quite a few Dublin salons to try out an array of treatments. I have my regulars, my splurges and a couple I’d gift for a special occasion. Here are some of this year’s best, just in time for party season primping, holiday gift-giving and treating your skin in this wintery weather.

Facials feel like a splurge, but you need only the occasional deep clean. And yes, it’s worth it. A trained aesthetician will examine your skin, cleanse it, treat it and provide recommendations and a skincare routine. Plus, having your pores purified by a professional will help you get the most out of your daily skincare products as they’ll be better able to penetrate.

I love visiting Virginie Vuillaume at her tiny, cosy salon Virginie Claire in Harold’s Cross, Dublin. She understands skin and how to make clients feel right at home, and the products she uses contain no nonsense. She offers a range of facials (€55-€85) by Phyt’s, an Ecocert-certified French brand that is as much about quality as it is about purity. These facials are very relaxing and incorporate massage (to increase blood flow), but they’re primarily an overhaul for the skin. The result is smaller pores, smoother skin and a more youthful complexion. They’re perfect for regular maintenance or a boost before a special occasion.

If you prefer a facial that feels like pure pampering, I’d recommend the deeply relaxing Dr Hauschka Classic Treatment (€85 for 120 minutes) by Tara O’Rourke at the Dublin Wellness Centre on South William Street. In addition to a thorough cleanse it includes a foot bath, facial steam, fragrant compresses and – my favourite bit – dry brushing, which is meant to stimulate the lymphatic system. It’s the perfect way to relax and reboot after the holiday season and would make a great gift.

Facials and massages are always sure-fire gifts, all the better if they include something to take home. Ebano in Ballinteer recently started offering a signature Hot Oil Candle Massage (€80), a 75-minute full-body head-to-toe massage. The clinic is located in a business centre, but you don’t care once you’re inside the treatment room. Ebano’s own 100 per cent organic candle made with soya, palm and grapeseed infused with neroli, clementine and geranium essential oils is lit before your arrival, so the air has a soft, citrusy scent. The warm oil is then used during the massage, which is tailored to work on your problem areas. It’s deeply therapeutic, the staff are lovely and you get to take the candle home afterwards.

Many of my favourite discoveries this year in terms of treatments have been related to hair, and they’ve all become regulars for me. For eyebrows I prefer threading: it’s precise, it doesn’t involve the chemicals found in wax and it doesn’t pull the skin or remove skin along with the hair. I go to Neelu, who works out of her tiny beauty bar in Arnott’s (€18). She’s incredibly fast, knows how to shape your brows to suit your face and applies make-up afterwards to hide any redness.

To remove hair from anywhere else I recommend sugaring. With little more than sugar, water, lemon juice and a firm grip, it removes hair without the same pinch, chemicals or breakage as waxing. For first-rate service, check out Lindsay Leggett – Lindsay the Sugarist – who operates out of the Hive Salon on South Great George’s Street (bikinis start at €20).

For hair colouring I go with Danish brand Natulique. It’s cleaner than commercial dye and just as effective, and I find it leaves my hair in better condition. Visit natulique.ie for a list of salons that offer it in Ireland.

kharris@irishtimes.com

Beauty Report will return next week

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.